An outdoor drinking water fountain that automatically monitors its water use and lets you know when it needs to be cleaned, is now installed and operating at Port Augusta’s foreshore.
The fountain is one of three being set up across regional areas of the state, as a way of providing a free alternative to bottled water for when you're are out and about in the community.
SA Water's General Manager of Communications and Engagement Anna Jackson said the fountain is connected to SA Water's local supply network, which distributes drinking water to homes and businesses in the region.
"The water this fountain produces is the same safe, clean water that flows from your tap," Anna said.
"The fountain also has a more modern design with the inclusion of a 'water window' allowing easy filling of a reusable bottle, and a foot pedal-operated in-ground dog bowl which lowers and fills with water for single use, ensuring adequate drainage and clean water every time.
"In addition, the fountain's water use can be remotely monitored by the local council, generate subsequent cleaning and maintenance schedules, and comes with a solar lighting system for illumination at night.
"On top of this, it can produce environmental, health and cost saving reports, with information such as how many plastic bottles were saved from landfill by choosing to either take a drink directly or fill up a reusable bottle with water from the fountain," Anna said.
"There are clear environmental benefits of choosing tap over bottled water, but it's also better for your hip pocket - more than 90 per cent of the cost of a bottle of water actually comes from its lid and label."
SA Water has been working with local government, Zoos SA and manufacturer Meet PAT to set up the three fountains, including in Port Augusta.
"One is already installed within the Monarto Zoo in the Murraylands and another is planned for Coonalpyn in the South East, and we plan to roll-out more drinking fountains in other areas of South Australia in the near future," Anna said.
"In the meantime, we provide portable water trailers - or Quench Benches - with in-built taps and bubblers, free of charge for large community events in regional and metropolitan areas of the state."
The Port Augusta City Council will be responsible for the ongoing management and maintenance of the fountain in their region. SA Water - through the Australian Water Quality Centre (AWQC) - will conduct annual testing of the water supplied through all three fountains.
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